Well you will all be pleased to know that we went to court on Thurs morning and WON our case. The other people didnt have a leg to stand on, the night before i had been through our tenancy agreement and highlighted all the sections that they had 'breached' in their treatment of us. I got copies of photos of all the damage and repairs and wrote on the back of them the particular clause in our tenancy agreement that they related to.
The only thing they could come up with was an unsigned, undated statment from the handy man lying through his teeth that he fixed everything ages ago and that we 'broke the toilet' with brute force and that we were awkward. The mediator threw that bit of trash straight back at them and they settled with us for $250 compensation, written confimation that we would not be held responsible for any of the damage caused by their negligence, confirmation that we would not have to pay the excessive water bill & confirmation that they wouldnt take the $240 out of our bond!
So we celebrated our day in court with a big strawberry cheesecake for Pete's birthday (candles in it and everything) and went out for a lovely meal and a few drinks. Will put the photos on later. We had a fab night, got extremely merry and Pete ended up singing Karaoke at this irish bar we took over. It was hilarious and just what we needed after the stress with the flat.
Now its my birthday (Pete is 24hours older than me) so i will put an entry on soon of my birthday excitement.